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ObamaComp Prediction Now Lives In US Senate Combining Coverages

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ObamaComp (r)  Prediction Combines Health, Workers Comp and Auto Insurance 

The ObamaComp  prediction now possibly becomes part of a larger combination of personal and industrial coverages.  I am not one to say that I told you so, but now there is now a live bill in the Senate that would merge Auto, Workers Compensation, and healthcare into a 24-hour health coverage plan. Of course, the property and casualty insurers are going to fight the bill. The provision was proposed last week by Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va.

Graphic Of Insurance ObamaComp Icon
StockUnlimited

In an article from the National Underwriter – According to a lobbyist for the American Insurance Association, the amendment is not likely to be taken up by the committee, although it has been officially filed. In a bulletin to members, the Independent Insurance Agents and Brokers of America said the work on language in the legislation in the Senate panel was supposed to be completed this week, but “the markup could very well slip into next week and potentially beyond.”

The industry’s stated opposition was contained in a letter delivered today to all members of the Senate Finance Committee. One of the more stark areas in the article was that Workers Compensation was not the driving force behind the letter. The letter centered on automobile insurance’s interplay with health insurance. I am not sure of the impact of the letter, but would it leave open an area to combine Workers Compensation and health coverage like ObamaComp?

Regardless, I do agree with a passage in the letter “In light of the serious damage it would do to our nation’s workers’ compensation and auto insurance systems, we respectfully urge the Finance Committee not to add the Rockefeller Amendment to the pending bill.”

Picture ObamaComp Speaks
Wikimedia Commons – White House

I had pointed out in my last few posts on the ObamaComp prediction that 24 hour health care had been attempted before and failed miserably. The letter to the Senate finance committee pointed to several states that experimented with pilot projects (California, Kentucky, and Oregon) and were not successful.

The bottom line of this post is that while this may not be added to the bill, there are now going to be open discussions about combining different coverages and will likely be discussed more in the future.

I have been informing our clients whether they are brokers, self-insureds, governmental agencies, or private companies that there is already a federal program that is currently controlling many Workers Compensation settlements. It is the CMS and Medicare Set Asides that they must approve. I will comment on medical set asides in my next post. Yes, the federal government has been heavily involved for quite some time in Workers Comp settlements.

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James Moore

Raleigh, NC, United States

About The Author...

James founded a Workers’ Compensation consulting firm, J&L Risk Mgmt Consultants, Inc. in 1996. J&L’s mission is to reduce our clients’ Workers Compensation premiums by using time-tested techniques. J&L’s claims, premium, reserve and Experience Mod reviews have saved employers over $9.8 million in earned premiums over the last three years. J&L has saved numerous companies from bankruptcy proceedings as a result of insurance overpayments.

James has over 27 years of experience in insurance claims, audit, and underwriting, specializing in Workers’ Compensation. He has supervised, and managed the administration of Workers’ Compensation claims, and underwriting in over 45 states. His professional experience includes being the Director of Risk Management for the North Carolina School Boards Association. He created a very successful Workers’ Compensation Injury Rehabilitation Unit for school personnel.

James’s educational background, which centered on computer technology, culminated in earning a Masters of Business Administration (MBA); an Associate in Claims designation (AIC); and an Associate in Risk Management designation (ARM). He is a Chartered Financial Consultant (ChFC) and a licensed financial advisor. The NC Department of Insurance has certified him as an insurance instructor. He also possesses a Bachelors’ Degree in Actuarial Science.

LexisNexis has twice recognized his blog as one of the Top 25 Blogs on Workers’ Compensation. J&L has been listed in AM Best’s Preferred Providers Directory for Insurance Experts – Workers Compensation for over eight years. He recently won the prestigious Baucom Shine Lifetime Achievement Award for his volunteer contributions to the area of risk management and safety. James was recently named as an instructor for the prestigious Insurance Academy.

James is on the Board of Directors and Treasurer of the North Carolina Mid-State Safety Council. He has published two manuals on Workers’ Compensation and three different claims processing manuals. He has also written and has been quoted in numerous articles on reducing Workers’ Compensation costs for public and private employers. James publishes a weekly newsletter with 7,000 readers.

He currently possess press credentials and am invited to various national Workers Compensation conferences as a reporter.

James’s articles or interviews on Workers’ Compensation have appeared in the following publications or websites:

  • Risk and Insurance Management Society (RIMS)
  • Entrepreneur Magazine
  • Bloomberg Business News
  • WorkCompCentral.com
  • Claims Magazine
  • Risk & Insurance Magazine
  • Insurance Journal
  • Workers Compensation.com
  • LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and other social media sites
  • Various trade publications

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